Skull dimensions predicting behavior? It sounds like debunked 19th century criminal anthropology, but hold on. Here is some evidence from the Department of Psychology, Brock University:
Facial characteristics are an important basis for judgements about gender, emotion, personality, motivational states and behavioural dispositions. Based on a recent finding of a sexual dimorphism in facial metrics that is independent of body size, we conducted three studies to examine the extent to which individual differences in the facial width-to-height ratio were associated with trait dominance (using a questionnaire) and aggression during a behavioural task and in a naturalistic setting (varsity and professional ice hockey). In study 1, men had a larger facial width-to-height ratio, higher scores of trait dominance, and were more reactively aggressive compared with women. Individual differences in the facial width-to-height ratio predicted reactive aggression in men, but not in women (predicted 15% of variance). In studies 2 (male varsity hockey players) and 3 (male professional hockey players), individual differences in the facial width-to-height ratio were positively related to aggressive behaviour as measured by the number of penalty minutes per game obtained over a season (predicted 29 and 9% of the variance, respectively). Together, these findings suggest that the sexually dimorphic facial width-to-height ratio may be an ‘honest signal’ of propensity for aggressive behaviour.
This was only true of men, not of women. And yes, I realize “on average”. It looks like testosterone makes the skull wider, and so the higher a man’s testosterone levels, the wider his skull. And we all know testosterone is partially responsible for aggressive tendencies. A little more info: Facial structure is a reliable cue of aggressive behavior.
This is very interesting research. Hopefully the experts will do even more research, but I often wonder if there is anything useful that can be done with this kind of information without being discriminatory?